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This year, Dr Tessy Thomas, the Director General (Aero Systems) at the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), received the APJ Abdul Kalam Award.
AP Majeed Khan, Chancellor of Noorul Islam University, led the selection committee in collaboration with NINS Medicity to announce the prize.
The award has been jointly organized by the Noorul Islam Centre for Higher Education at Kumarakovil in the Kanniyakumari district and the Noorul Islam Institute of Medical Science and Research Foundation (NIMS) Medicity since 2019 to honour public servants who have excelled in their various fields of employment.
On 19 July, Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan presented the award at NIMS Medicity, Neyyartinkarai.
The press release also states that the winner will receive a commemorative trophy, a certificate of appreciation, and a monetary prize of Rs 1 lakh. Tessy Thomas is the first woman scientist to lead the Indian missile program.
Who Is Dr Tessy Thomas?
- Dr Tessy Thomas is an Indian scientist and Director General of Aeronautical Systems and former Project Director of the Agni-IV missile program at the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
- She is the first woman scientist in India to be in a missile project.
- Among her affiliations is the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE), the Institution of Engineers-India (IEI), as well as the Tata Administrative Service (TAS).
- In 2011, she served as the project director for mission Agni IV, which was successfully tested.
- Following her graduation from Thrissur College, she pursued research in missile technology.
- Before joining DRDO in 1988, Tessy earned an MBA in Operations Management and a PhD in Missile Guidance.
- As part of the Agni missile program, she worked under her revered role model, APJ Abdul Kalam.
- Dr Tessy Thomas is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Award for Excellence in Public Administration Academics and Management-2012.
Personal Facts About Dr Tessy Thomas
- She was born in Alappuzha, Kerala, in April 1963.
- In honour of Mother Teresa, she was given the name Tessy (a derivative of Teresa or Tressia).
- As a child, she grew up near the Thumba Rocket Launching Station, which sparked her interest in rockets and missiles.
- Her education in engineering was completed in Kerala.
- Her personal development can be attributed to her home town and mother, according to Dr Thomas.